The member countries of BRICS have called for a new ‘Social Contract’ among the governments at all the three levels, people and other stakeholders to mount collective efforts to address various challenges associated with urban transition and enable urban renaissance. Brazil, Russia, China, India and South Africa stressed on such an integrated approach during the three day BRICS Urbanisation Forum on ‘Urban Transition in BRICS’ that concluded in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh on Friday.
Ministers, policy makers, experts and members of academia from member countries during detailed discussions on challenges of rapid urban transformation in member countries stressed on the need for inclusive and sustainable urban development approaches based on people’s participation in managing urban affairs.
Expressing concern over the consequences of unplanned and unanticipated urban expansion in member countries, delegated from member countries called for enhancing planning, technical and financial capacities of city governments. They stressed on the need for coordination of policies of federal, provincial and city governments for an integrated approach to urban development and for forging effective partnerships with private sector for resource mobilisation in an enabling environment.
BRICS countries who are at different levels of urbanisation shared their experiences and approaches to emerging challenges and agreed on the need to enable planned and guided urbanisation to take advantage of urbanisation. They have taken stock of deficiencies in urban structure, various aspects of smart city development, expanding slums and the need for ensuring liveable and sustainable human settlements, financing urban infrastructure and reforms required to enable urban renaissance in member countries.
Addressing the closing session of the three day conference, Union Minister of State for Urban Development Shri Rao Inderjit Singh urged the BRICS nations to step up cooperation to effectively address the new urban agenda focussing on inclusive urban development. He said that member countries should ensure effective follow up actions in pursuance of new urban agenda to be finalised at the HABITAT-III Conference to be held in Quito, Eucador next month.
Inderjit Singh said that there is immense scope for cooperation among BRICS grouping on matters of urbanisation based on respective experiences and shared goals. Appreciating the intense three day deliberations, he stressed on the need to enhance capacities of urban local bodies.
Dr.P. Narayana, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Urban Development, Government of Andhra Pradesh gave an account of the initiatives of State Government to enable transparent urban governance and better service delivery.
Ministers, experts, members of academia, representatives of agencies and organisations working in urban sector from member countries attended the three day BRICS Urbanisation Forum.
Perspectives of members countries on various issues concerning urban transition, common concerns and positions there on would be placed for consideration by leaders of member countries at the ‘BRICS Summit’ to be held in Goa next month.